Faculty and Staff:
Our mission to conduct impactful research, deliver a world-class education, and serve our community throughout this pandemic remains our top priority. Thanks to the diligence and compassion of our community, we have remained true to our mission while keeping our fellow Spartans safe.
With the rapid spread of the Omicron variant, the CDC has established new guidelines that UNCG will incorporate in our plans for the Spring 2022 semester, which begins January 10th.
With these new guidelines and the lessons learned from previous semesters, in-person instruction with regular class capacity will continue to be our default teaching method, except for those classes already scheduled and approved for online delivery. All University services and operations will continue to be offered face-to-face.
Expectations for Spring Semester
We ask for your continued vigilance in adhering to safety measures and community health guidelines. These safety measures include:
- All individuals are required to wear face coverings indoors at all times, regardless of vaccination status. This includes classrooms, labs, workplaces, events, and gatherings. Exceptions include: when students are in their own residence hall rooms, when faculty and staff are alone in a private office, and when actively eating or drinking. Following CDC recommendations, we strongly encourage the use of surgical masks rather than cloth masks. Surgical masks will be made available at designated on-campus locations.
- All students living in residence halls must be tested before move-in, regardless of vaccination status. Residential students have received an email from Housing and Residence Life with testing details.
- Students, faculty, and staff must upload proof of vaccination through the Faculty and Staff Vaccine Portal or Student Vaccine Portal or be tested regularly. Testing will resume after the winter break, beginning January 3rd.
- Instructors are asked to use seating charts in the classrooms to assist with contact tracing. These charts are currently being updated for Spring 2022 and will be available via the Registrar’s Classroom Scheduling website by January 5th.
- When possible, we strongly encourage virtual meetings and gatherings. In-person indoor events will be allowed as long as all participants wear face coverings at all times. In-person indoor events should not provide any food or drink to avoid the removal of face coverings.
Vaccinations and Boosters
We strongly encourage you to get vaccinated and receive your booster. Vaccination and a booster are the most effective tools available to protect against serious illness and hospitalization. If you have questions about the vaccines, boosters, or need help locating vaccination locations, visit the UNCG COVID Website.
Once you have received your vaccine, be sure to upload your information to the UNCG COVID-19 Vaccine Portals. Booster information cannot be uploaded at this time, but plans are underway to make this possible soon.
Continued Instructional Operations and Isolation
We remain a place-based university for the many students enrolled in our in-person degree programs. Our default mode of instruction and overall campus operations will be face-to-face. Our public health protocols, our high vaccination rates, and what we know from previous experience regarding student learning all point in the same direction: most of our students are best served by face-to-face instruction. Grade and anecdotal data reveal that students performed better in face-to-face courses than in online courses in the last academic year, especially in introductory undergraduate courses. Beyond enhanced learning, face-to-face services are vital to student success.
The good news is that the vast majority of staff, faculty, and students have been vaccinated. You will need to isolate if you test positive for COVID-19. Faculty who have mild symptoms and can still teach should not cancel classes but instead should temporarily shift to online instruction during their isolation period. Instructors who are unable to teach due to illness should contact their department chair/head or school director, who will reassign classes during the recovery period. During the spring semester, we must all be prepared to support and assist one another, particularly during required times of isolation.
While we encourage flexibility to accommodate students who need to isolate, instructors are asked not to change their course delivery methods from what is in the published class schedule. Late changes to course mode of instruction can have serious financial implications for students because of housing arrangements made prior to the start of the term. In addition, last semester’s COVID-19 mandatory testing protocols were made much more complicated by mismatches between the course schedule and the true mode of instruction. Faculty questions about flexibility options for Spring 2022 should be directed to Associate Vice Provost Andrew Hamilton (firstname.lastname@example.org), who will also coordinate with deans, heads, and chairs on any necessary changes. Any faculty member requesting accommodation due to a medical condition should contact Patricia Lynch (email@example.com) or Latisha Perry (firstname.lastname@example.org) for assistance.
Please continue to check your email and other University channels periodically for updates and information before returning to campus. We will share additional guidance based on CDC and public health guidelines as they are available. Information on what students can expect for the Spring 2022 semester will be communicated to them as well.
We continue to be optimistic about the spring semester and look forward to seeing you in the coming week. Thank you again for everything you are doing to Shield Our Spartans.